Indian short-video service providers have started throwing big money at influencers in their quest to retain users on their platforms to get exclusive rights to the content. One company has even designated a multi-million dollar fund to acquire influencers, according to an industry executive.
Influencers are a critical pillar of the growth strategy for short video platforms, which attempt to scale up quickly to fill the gap created after TikTok’s ban. In addition to enhancing user retention, the presence of an influencer who can attract big crowds is crucial to attracting new users.
The connection between user and influencer is different for mature platforms such as Instagram and Twitter. Influencers need platforms more than platforms need them. On the other hand, growing platforms need to spend money driving influencers toward them.
Recently, Mitron has raised $5 million in funding led by Nexus Venture Partners. Talking to NBB Shivank Agarwal (Founder, Mitron) said, ” We are planning to expand our team and develop our product. The funding will help us in making our community strong. We plan to make different community artists such as singers, poets, dancers, and many more. We plan to bring on creators and influencers who will bring users along with them.”
Talking to Next Big Brand, Biswatma Nayak (Co-founder, Chingari) said, “We are excited to be mentored by experienced leaders such as Grinda & Norgard and their vast knowledge will help us in growing”
“We will use this fund to strengthen our engineering team and we are hiring tirelessly. Apart from this, we will focus on vernacular audience and creators, bringing them on board.”
So these apps are now focussing on bringing the influencers on board by paying them money like TikTok. TikTok had a huge financial backing and hence didn’t shy away from paying money to the creators.
When we asked Viraj Sheth, CEO, and Co-Founder, Monk Entertainment an influencer marketing and talent management company about this, he said, ” I think creators are already following the suite and a lot of top creators have moved to Indian short video platforms. They have a very loyal fan base and that is why the users will also migrate to the apps where they will find their favorite influencers”
Backed by large groups and investors, MX Taka Tak and ShareChat are seen as the big spenders, while smaller ones like Chingari are trying to acquire creators.
Experts said their user experience and artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms played a critical role in their success while TikTok gained from acquiring influencers.
Speaking on the same lines, Bhawna Sethi (Founder, Lets Influence) said, ” TikTok was highly successful in India due to their simple tools and ease of usage which democratized the content available on it. They had the money to invest in Artificial Intelligence (AI) & Machine Learning (ML) which is tough for Indian startups right now.
With more apps coming into the market, the war of who will pay more is starting and influencers also choose to go to the platform which is paying them more. TikTok was highly successful due to its technology and it involved 100s of people.”
With all these insights, the market is shaping up for a change and it can go either way as Indian apps need huge money to reach the technological advancement level TikTok had and influencers need to make their choice wisely that which part they are going.